Samsung Galaxy Note 5 vs. Galaxy S5: What We Know So Far

We continue to see Samsung Galaxy Note 5 rumors tease consumers in the United States and around the world. With those Galaxy Note 5 rumors in mind, we want to take an early look at how the device is stacking up against the aging Samsung Galaxy S5. This is our way too early Samsung Galaxy Note 5 vs. Galaxy S5 comparison.

In April of 2014, Samsung executives took the stage and announced a brand new fifth-generation Galaxy S dubbed Galaxy S5. As expected, the Samsung Galaxy S5 arrived with a number of big time changes including an improved display, tweaks to the design, camera enhancements, new TouchWiz software, a different processor, and a whole lot more.

While the Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge have since replaced the Galaxy S5 as the company’s flagship Galaxy S models, the Galaxy S5 is still extremely relevant. For one, it’s still in the hands of thousands of people worldwide. And two, carriers in the United States have slashed its price making it an affordable alternative to expensive devices like the iPhone 6, Galaxy Note 4 and Galaxy S6.


Later this year, some of you might find yourselves looking to replace the Galaxy S5. Others might look into buying the Galaxy S5 for cheap. Whatever the case may be, you’ll probably weigh a number of Galaxy S5 competitors including the Samsung Galaxy Note 5.

Samsung’s Galaxy Note 5 isn’t official but Galaxy Note 5 rumors continue to heat up. As the year’s progressed, we’ve started to hear whispers about the Galaxy Note 5 specs, Galaxy Note 5 release date and Galaxy Note 5 carriers. There are still plenty of details that remain shrouded in mystery but we have enough to make an early comparison to Samsung’s aging former flagship.

This early Galaxy Note 5 vs. Galaxy S5 comparison will run down the latest Galaxy Note 5 rumors and show you how they currently compare to a device that many people will think about replacing later this year. Here’s what you need to know as we push into May.

Galaxy Note 5 Release Date

If you’re thinking about replacing your Galaxy S5 with a Galaxy Note 5 or if you’re looking to physically compare the two, you probably have a long wait ahead of you.

Thus far, we’ve only seen one Galaxy Note 5 release date rumor emerge. And while it’s a little bit flimsy, it does fall into the Galaxy Note’s usual release window.

The rumor comes from Korean publication Daum and it suggests that the Samsung Galaxy Note 5 release date could land in August. If true, the release would arrive much earlier than the Galaxy Note 4 release date which arrived in late September last year.

Verizon Galaxy Note 4 Lollipop Update Review - 7

Before you go circling August in pen on the calendar, here are a few things to know. First, while Daum has been correct with rumored information in the past, the publication was wrong about the Galaxy S6 release date. It claimed that the device would arrive early in March. The Samsung Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge both arrived on April 10th.

Second, if you’re familiar with the Galaxy Note series you’d know that Samsung typically announces its new Galaxy Note at IFA. The five Galaxy Note flagships in existence (Galaxy Note, Note 2, Note 3, Note 4, Note Edge) were all announced on stage around the start of IFA.

IFA 2015 kicks off on September 4th which means that September 1st-4th are the dates you should be circling on your calendar. In pencil. An August Galaxy Note 5 release is certainly possible (anything is at this point) but we wouldn’t bet any kind of money on an early release.

The important thing prospective Galaxy Note 5 buyers need to know is that we’re probably still months away from a Galaxy Note 5 release date. It’s still early in the Galaxy Note 5 rumor cycle and we typically see rumors heat up when a launch is close. Galaxy Note 5 rumors are only getting started.

Nothing is concrete but we, like many others, aren’t expecting a release until September or October. For some of you, that will make your decision a little bit easier. For others, it will only serve to complicate things as you look to replace or buy the Samsung Galaxy S5.


Samsung’s Galaxy Note series has always been limited to a few major carriers in the United States. The Galaxy S5 isn’t a Galaxy Note.

The Samsung Galaxy S5 is available on all five major US carriers including AT&T and Verizon and it’s also available on a number of smaller carriers including MetroPCS and Cricket. This gives consumers a number of solid options outside of the top five service providers.

Verizon Galaxy Note 4 Lollipop Update Review - 1

Galaxy Note 5 rumors have, thus far, failed to establish a full list of Galaxy Note 5 carriers though they have hinted at a few potential destinations for Samsung’s new flagship.

A recent report from SamMobile outlines some potential Galaxy Note 5 release details. The site says that Samsung will use model number SM-N920F for the international version of the Galaxy Note 5. The international Galaxy Note 4 model number is SM-N910x so the change is logical. The leak also outlines several other model numbers including those for the AT&T Galaxy Note 5 and Verizon Galaxy Note 5.

  • Galaxy Note 5 – SM-N920F EUR XX (Europe)
  • Galaxy Note 5 – SM-N920S KOR SKC (Korea)
  • Galaxy Note 5 – SM-N920K KOR KTC (Korea)
  • Galaxy Note 5 – SM-N920A NA ATT (AT&T)
  • Galaxy Note 5 – SM-N920V NA VZW (Verizon)

This all but confirms a Galaxy Note 5 release for the top two carriers in the United States and it also suggests that the Galaxy Note 5 will be coming to at least two other key markets, Europe and Korea. We’d be surprised to see smaller carriers latch on after all these years but we can’t rule anything out at this point.


When the Samsung Galaxy S5 arrived, it boasted one of the best smartphone displays ever made. Samsung’s AMOLED technology has come a long way from the 480 × 800 pixel panel that it put on the original Galaxy S back in 2010.


Samsung’s Galaxy S5 comes with a 5.1-inch Full HD AMOLED display that features 1080 x 1920 pixel resolution with 432 pixel-per-inch. The display is stunning and it’s still holding up nicely as the device celebrates its first birthday.

Samsung is always pushing the bar and it looks like it could raise it again in 2015. Samsung Galaxy Note 5 display rumors suggest that we could see Samsung move beyond the Quad HD technology that it implemented inside the Galaxy Note 4, Galaxy S6 Edge and Galaxy S6.

Samsung will reportedly start production on a 6-inch Ultra HD display at 700+ pixels per inch in the near future. If it’s able to get the panel ready in time for the fall, it could mean a shift from Quad HD resolution to Ultra HD. UHD delivers a whopping 2160 x 3840 resolution.

Galaxy S6 Avengers Age of Ultron - 3

report from PhoneArena, citing slides from Samsung’s Analyst Day event, suggests that Samsung is at least considering Ultra HD 2160 × 3840 pixel resolution for the Galaxy Note 5 display. The company is rumored to be throwing around a 5.89-inch display for both a flat and an “Edge” Galaxy Note 5 model. In other words, the Galaxy Note 5 could deliver higher resolution and a curved option like the Galaxy S6 and Galaxy Note 4.

The Korea Herald suggests that Samsung is considering the Galaxy S6 Edge’s dual-edge display technology for the Galaxy Note series. The report cites Roh Tae-moon, executive vice president of Samsung’s product strategy team who notes that “there is a possibility that Samsung will introduce the curved display for the Galaxy Note lineup.”

report from China suggests that Samsung will be using a flexible display on the Galaxy Note 5. In addition to that, an old report from Korean publication Ledwn, a publication that accurately predicted the Galaxy S6 Edge display, claims that Samsung will be putting a flexible display on the Galaxy Note 5.

In summary, here’s how the display specs could stack up:

We recommend taking a look at our Galaxy S6 Edge review to familiarize yourself with Samsung’s curved technology and its high-resolution AMOLED displays. And if you’re not familiar with the Galaxy S5 display, take a look at our review.


The Samsung Galaxy S5 design features a whole lot of plastic including a perforated back plate that comes in an assortment of different colors.


While the design might be plastic, it does come with some useful features including an IP67 certification that protects it against water and dust, a microSD card slot for expanded storage and a removable battery. The removable battery makes it easy to replace if it’s damaged and it allows users to install an extended battery for more juice.

Samsung’s Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge don’t use plastic designs. Instead, they utilize the company’s new design language that incorporates glass and metal. The designs are absolutely beautiful. The changes came with some tradeoffs though.

They don’t come with IP67 certs, they don’t have microSD card slots, and they don’t come with removable batteries. It’s a move that has frustrated a great number of people.

Galaxy Note 5 concept.

Galaxy Note 5 concept.

A new Samsung Galaxy Note 5 concept is making the rounds. It’s gorgeous to look at but the design doesn’t come from Samsung itself. Samsung is well known for keeping its designs under lock and key.

Unsurprisingly, we haven’t heard much about the Galaxy Note 5 design. We have, however, seen one Samsung executive hint at what the Galaxy Note 5 could entail and it sounds like Samsung’s next Galaxy Note could borrow from the Galaxy S6, not the Galaxy S5.

In recent comments made to Pocket-lint, Samsung UK’s vice president for mobile and IT Conor Pierce offered up some interesting quotes that hint at what we could see from Samsung down the road:

The company realised that it needed to do something different. We asked questions of people, what do they want? They want premium design, tick that box. They want the best camera, there you go. They want to solve battery issues. And they want choice. So I’m very confident that [the S6 and edge] materialised from what people want.

We’ve learned that bringing beautiful, premium innovations in design is what people want. I think the market needs this as well because the market has been very saturated.

I think it’s about us breaking new ground. It was a bold move to try to do something different, but if you go back to last year, we had the Note edge and you could see how well that was received. So we understand that this is what people want. They are looking for some inspiration, so yes you will see that across our portfolio.

He claims that Samsung is very focused on these key features and suggests that the company’s upcoming products could come with some of these big changes on board:

What we have noticed is that typically the upgrade cycle is every 24 months because of the contracts, and people are generally offered an upgrade around six months before that.

That’s when they start to look at the phones on the market. So it’s very important that we don’t just do our best work in this current quarter. People don’t just turn up in this quarter, or July, August or September, looking for a new phone, it’s all year round.

I think the fact that we managed to deliver a new form factor with the Note, create a new category, shows the ambition to keep changing and keep innovating. Samsung puts $40 million a day into research and development, which is a massive injection of money into R&D.

So while we may not see plastic ever again, we also may see the the Galaxy Note 5’s design come with the same tradeoffs that Samsung had to make with the Galaxy S6.


In those comments, Pierce notes that consumers want a high quality camera on their smartphone. The Galaxy S5 comes with a solid 16MP shooter but we’ve seen the company make improvements to the hardware and software with the Galaxy Note 4 and Galaxy S6 releases. The company is rumored to be tweaking it further on the Galaxy Note 5.

Samsung is reportedly working on new camera features that it will deliver with an upcoming Android 5.1.1 update. The features are unclear though rumors suggest they might have something to do with Google’s camera API. If Google adds the full API, we could see some changes to the camera including RAW and better control over the shutter speed.

Samsung delivers an impressive Galaxy S6 Edge camera experience.

Samsung delivers an impressive Galaxy S6 Edge camera experience.

These features will evidently be on board the Galaxy Note 5. It’s not clear if the Galaxy S5 will get them though Samsung is known for bringing new software features to old devices with software updates. Android 5.1.1 is only rumored for the Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge.